見つけるためになんて

Riccardo91

Senior Member
Italian
Dear Japanese forum,

I'm failing to understand a sentence from a cartoon and I was wondering if you could help me.
Context: two university students are talking about what they'll do after graduation. One of them is going to grad school, but he's not sure about his choice because...

(How it's written on the script)
本当にやりたいことを見つけるために... なんて、結局猶予期間がほしいだけなのかもな

(How it's actually said by the voice actor)
本当にやりたいことを見つけるためになんて... 結局猶予期間がほしいだけなのかもな

That なんて is the troubling part for me. I don't get it if 見つけるために is what he wants to do by entering grad school or if it's unrelated.

Attempt 1: "After all, maybe I only wish for a grace period in order to find out what I really want to do".
(見つけるために is the final goal.)

Attempt 2: "(Going to grad school) in order to find out what I really want to do... Maybe I just wish for a grace period, after all".
(見つけるために is something he's considering a pretense.)

Should I choose by instinct, I'd say #2.

Any idea? Thank you so much!
 
  • Katzuhiko Minohara

    Senior Member
    Spanish Mexico
    なんて means to doubt about that, suspect about its truthfulness,

    non credo di che sia per
    I don't think that it is for

    il fatto di che ... lo dubito
    the fact that ... I doubt it
     

    Flaminius

    hedomodo
    日本語 / japāniski / יפנית
    Attempt 2: "(Going to grad school) in order to find out what I really want to do... Maybe I just wish for a grace period, after all".
    (見つけるために is something he's considering a pretense.)
    This is the correct understanding, Riccardo! The "final goal" of going to the grad school is to get a grace period.

    The structure of the sentence is tough to see through due to an ellipsis. A more visible format would be:
    [本当にやりたいことを見つけるために(大学院に行く)]なんて、猶予期間がほしいだけだろう。

    If your script contains an ellipsis mark (just a pedantic note: the Japanese ellipsis is made by two or three of this character, "…”), it may be there to highlight the unmentioned full structure of the sentence. Ellipses are not just for silence, and hiatuses in speech.

    Look at my full format again. The big topic is what comes between the beginning of the sentence and なんて, including the elided part. In a way, なんて is a wrapper that makes the topic of a sentence out of big chunks like a verb phrase, or a full sentence.

    Another function of なんて is to foretell the "antipathetic nature" of the comment that follows the topic. It's not just about doubt. In the next example, なんて invites a comment of surprise:
    あのコップが十万ドルで売れるなんて、オークションの前には考えもしなかったよ。
     

    SoLaTiDoberman

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    [本当にやりたいことを見つけるために(大学院に行く)]なんて、猶予期間がほしいだけだろう。
    =[本当にやりたいことを見つけるために(大学院に行く)]などと言うのは、猶予期間がほしいだけだろう。
    =[本当にやりたいことを見つけるために(大学院に行く)]などと言っているが、(本当は)猶予期間がほしいだけだろう。

    なんて
    =などとは
    =などと言うのは(等と言うのは)
    =saying something such as ~~~
     

    gengo

    Senior Member
    American English
    本当にやりたいことを見つけるためになんて... 結局猶予期間がほしいだけなのかもな

    My liberal attempt:
    This whole thing about "finding out what I really want to do" -- maybe all I want is some time to think.

    That is how I would express the idea of the Japanese here, and not just the words themselves.
     

    Riccardo91

    Senior Member
    Italian
    Thank you so much, and sorry for the delay in answering! You're precious as always!
    Especially thank to Flaminius for your really detailed explanation, it really helped!

    Riccardo
     
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